Painting a grim picture of the healthcare sector in the country, the Planning Commission has squarely blamed the shortage of medical professionals for the dismal scenario saying there was a requirement of at least 600,000 more doctors.
The situation is particularly bad in the public healthcare sector, a high-level group of the Commission said in a report last week.
The public healthcare has been on a serious decline during the last two or three decades because of non- availability of medical and paramedical staff, diagnostic services and medicines.
The situation in availability of specialist manpower in Community Health Centres (CHC) is particularly bad as against the sanctioned posts.
About 59.4 per cent surgeons, 45 per cent obstetricians and gynecologists, 61 per cent physicians and 53 per cent paediatricians were not in position, the report said.
The number of doctors registered by different state councils stood at 6,68,131 during the year 2006 giving a doctor to population ratio of 60:100000.
The state wide distribution of doctors was also highly skewed with certain states like Karnataka and Union Territories such as Delhi and Goa having a favourable ratio and other states like Haryana, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh being under-served, the group said.
If the targeted doctor population norm is taken as 1:1000, there is a requirement of at least 600,000 doctors.